Monday, October 3, 2016

Rudy Project Sterling Helmet Review

* Disclaimer: I received the Rudy Project Sterling Helmet to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (Ambassador), and check out to review, find, and write race reviews

I bought a Louis Garneau X-Lite helmet from performance a few years back for around $99 and it’s incredibly light weight with tons of smaller vent holes.  This helmet has been a joy to ride with for years, and I wasn’t sure what Rudy Project would offer to outperform my LG helmet.  I have heard great things about Rudy Project though and was excited to put it to the test. 

Rudy Project sent me the Sterling helmet to test out, which was facilitated through being a BibRave Pro.  Let’s start off with the first thing I noticed out of the box.  Rudy Project has bright Flou colors (Pink/Blue, Orange/Black, Black/Red, Yellow/Black, and Green/Blue).  They also have 7 other color options.  I got the Green with Blue accents and it looks amazing.    It also has a visor that you can use (or choose not to) that simply clicks on.  The visor is extremely sturdy and I’ve had no issues with attaching my helmet mirror to the visor.

Some of the blue accents do have a purpose besides just looking cool.  There is a sunglass dock where you can store your sunglasses while you are not wearing them.  This really comes in handy when you stop for a break or lunch. 

The Sterling has 18 vents and weighs in at 10.64 ounces (301.50 grams).  While my LG helmet was 33% lighter than the Sterling, the Sterling actually felt lighter.  The LG had 37 smaller vents, but I felt the 18 larger vents on the Sterling and the way they were designed helped to bring more air flow through the helmet and keep me cooler. 

The Sterling uses Rudy Project's RSR7 retention system.  It makes adjustments on-the-fly really easy and only requires one hand for adjustment. You can also adjust the head ring to three different settings for a more customized fit.  I felt that the fit is a huge advantage with the Sterling as it really just made the helmet feel like it was part of my head.  I truly forgot that I had the helmet on during my rides, which is the biggest compliment I could give.

You have two options for padding inside the helmet (both are included).  You can use the padding with the bug net, which will keep bugs and bees out of your helmet, or you can use the padding without the bug net.  I did notice a little more heat buildup with the netting, but it wasn’t bad at all.  The Sterling also comes with a soft bag to store your helmet.

The chin buckle is ergonomically designed with Rudy Project's Fastex Buckle Closure System.  It is a simple and quick snap-lock buckle.  There is also a pad that goes between the buckle and your skin for added comfort.  A great addition in my opinion. 

The Sterling is really easy to swap out padding, make adjustments to the straps, take everything off for cleaning, and putting it all back together.  Check out this rather long video if you want to see them take apart and reassemble the Sterling. 

The real reason you wear a helmet while cycling is to keep your head safe.  Some people think that they ride safe enough or they are that good that they don’t need a helmet, but some of the best riders I know have crashed trying to avoid a rock or animal running across the road.  Helmets are there to protect you against unexpected situations like drivers who aren’t paying attention as well.  Rudy Project makes top of the line helmets and have multiple safety certifications (CE 89 686 EEC, EN 1078, CPSC 12.03, AS NZS 2063).

What it really comes down to for me is that the Sterling is an extremely safe helmet that is so comfortable that you don’t even know it’s there.  While I did like the LG helmet, it doesn’t compare to the Sterling in features, fit, or style.  The one area where the LG helmet came out ahead was the price.  When you think about it through, price should not be the main reason for why you choose a specific helmet, especially if you are talking about your safety.  Let’s face it, you only have one brain and it can’t be replaced if it gets damaged.

Right now, you can subscribe to get special promotions from Rudy Project and get 25% off the Sterling.  Click here to sign up and get the discount.  That will drop the price from $274.99 to around $206.25.  When you buy at the Rudy Project website you get free 2-way shipping, a low price guarantee, and a 90-day return policy.  You have a full 90 days to return your unused helmet for a full refund.  

Looks awesome with the bright Flou colors.
Light weight at 10.64 ounces (301.50 grams)
18 well designed vent holes
Comes with bug screen pads, free pads, storage bag, and visor
The best fit of any helmet that I have tested.

More pricey than some competitors at $274.99 (but there is a 25% off coupon)

Rudy Project’s Social Media Links:

In the world of cycling, there are tons of products to choose from.  There are several companies who claim to have the best helmets.  While I have not tested them all, I can attest to the fact that the Rudy Project Sterling is one amazing road cycling helmet.  From the fit to the style, you really can’t go wrong with this helmet.  I have yet to read a bad review of it.  Give it a try and let me know what you think.

You can check out some of my fellow BibRave Pro ambassadors' reviews at the links below.

Allison Collister -
Brenda -
Jessica Rudd -
Emily -
Jeremy -
Heather -
Erica -

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